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The Semi-Retired Foamer has been a railfan since he was around 5 years old, a very young age when one really should avoid being involved with the gunzel community to any great extent.
After a few decades of train chasing one decided to break with protocol and get married, thus leading to a severe cut in railfan activity.
Subsequent dealings with social misfits, loonatics, mental defectives and self appointed experts lead to an even greater decrease in my hobby participation.
However things have changed thanks our small group of trusted mate, interest has returned, and now I have become a bit more involved yet again. Having learnt to laugh, with others, at all the more 'Moronic Foamers'.
.Oh the irony that lays behind that term.
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Sunday, February 17, 2008

Newcastle Mystery Bridge!




This bridge is something I first noted, while passing at speed, about a year ago while returning from Newcastle. I had the wife with me, so a brief glimpse was all I got, while the idea of turning back for an investigation was simply out of the question.
Yesterday, while doing a job in Newcastle, I thought I would take the opportunity to have a closer look. Earlier I had consulted a local historian who believed what I saw was actually an old road bridge.
All I could remember was it was to the left of the road from Barnsley towards Fassifern and just south of the Killingworth turnoff.
Didn't take long to find it, but the distance view was not going to give any confirmations, so a bit of bush bashing was to follow. We followed a black pipe that ran along what looked to be a very old formation, until we finally reached the bridge in question, complete with a couple of dog spikes and a length of rail sticking out of the dirt on one side.
Didn't have my camera, so the mobile phone shots here will have to suffice until I return.
Certainly didn't feel the timbers were in a condition to hold us, so dreams of crossing were soon abandoned.
Can anyone identify the bridge and what this line was?
The road appears to be a more recent addition and would seem to be somewhat higher than the formation. It could not be determined where it went after crossing the road, a large grassy hill may have been created during the road work wiping out the continuing formation.
What appears to be an old mine or quarry lies just beyond this hill.
Any helps and history would be welcome.

Brad

9 comments:

Anonymous said...

It could be part of the old killingworth colliery line.

alcogoodwin said...

No, it is a few kilometres to the south of that formation.
The following comes from the LRRSA Yahoogroup.
"This bridge once carried a 3ft 6in gauge electric line from one
underground section of Northern Colliery to another. It was briefly
described in John Shoebridge's article 'Two Twisted Rails' which
appeared in Light Railways issue 189, June 2006.

Cheers
Bruce"

Anonymous said...

Gday Brad,
It looks like the remains of the bridge beside the road at Killingworth . This used to be part of Caledonia Colliery's Cockle creek network. Going by Brian Andrew's map I think that the line served either Seaham No1 or No2 Collieries. These pits closed before 1950, as there is no mention of them in the 1950 Railways map of the Newcastle district coal lines but the department could be wrong!.
Cheers
Milo

Vic Rail (Riccardo) said...

I think I have walked across this bridge in the 80s, it was in better nick then. It is on the Rhondda Colliery line, the one that Uncle Keith was seen driving 5069 across in "The Ragtag Railway" (the show misleadingly implied that 5069 was in the Dorrigo area at the itme)
Of course, it could be any of dozens of similar bridges that probably rest on colliery easements around the Hunter.

Fassi trainman said...

It is part of the old West Wallsend Line from Cockle Creek. Go to NSWrail.net search West Wallsend Branch under Newcastle Lines. From a junction at Cockle Creek it went via Killingworth colliery,
Barnsley, Seaham colliey,Holmesville,
West Wallsend. Closing around 1929

alcogoodwin said...

This bridge has brought on a massive amount of different responses here and in email.
A contributer from the LRRSA believes it was a very old electrified (narrow gauge) line that served just beyond the nearby road crossing. Modern day road works have made for a big embankment and hard viewing.
The Killi line crossing at Barnsley is a few kilometres north of here, but given the direction they both aim, they must have got close to each other.
If we could get to the formation on the other side of the bridge, I think a walk would reveal some great information.

Fassi trainman said...

The Killingworth Colliery line branched off before Barnsley it didn't go to Killingworth only Colliery. After Barnsley another branch to Seaham No2 with main line to Holmsville then West Wallsend then to West Wallsend colliery and Seaham Colliery.

alcogoodwin said...

Yes I believe so.
Brian Andrews was showing me around the area a couple of years back.
IIRC the Killi line branched east of Barnsley (as you say) and crosses the main road a little further to the south of Barnsley and followed the road towards Killingworth for a while, before swinging a bit of a northward ark around the town.
This bridge is quite aa few kilometres south of the Killingworth crossing again.

Once it quietens down at work I will have a look at NearMap and see if I can mark it out and put it on this blogsite.

Brad

Fassi trainman said...

I found the bridge on google earth at 151'34'17.98 East 32'57'7.75 South